Friday, September 23, 2005

Hate Groups in Maine: Yesterday and Now

This post was written with the help of Wikipedia.com
Most people are aware of the Church of the Creator group that came to Maine to protest the growing Somali population in Lewiston, Maine. This was a group that came from outside the state and made its presence known to the residents and the nation through the media. What many Mainers don't know is that there are racial hate groups that have resided in Maine or are residing here right now.

An historical example is the Ku Klux Klan. The KKK had one of the largest presences in Maine around the turn of the 1900's and into the 1920's. The main target of their hate wasn't black people who lived in Maine (although they were targeted). Their target was the huge Catholic population in northern Maine. Why? Because the KKK is a Protestant religious group.

It must be made clear that the members of the KKK in Maine at that time were not from the South but were Maine residents. Today, the KKK presence in Maine is gone and the power that the KKK once had in general has all but evaporated. They still exist, but mostly on the web and in small groups in the South. Today, hate groups in Maine are mostly underground, their presence known to only but those who want to join and those who seek them out.

As part the work challenging hate groups, the Southern Poverty Law Center maintains a listing of known hate groups in every state. In 2004, Maine was said to have two hate groups: the National Socialist Movement and the Creativity Movement (formerly the Church of the Creator).

The National Socialist Movement was created by Colin Jordan on Adolf Hitler’s birthday in 1962 in the United Kingdom as an offshoot of the British Nation Party. Jordan got the inspiration from a letter that he received from George Lincoln Rockwell, the created of the American Nazi Party. The American Nazi Party was founded along the lines of the National Socialism that was the foundation of the Nazi regime in the Third Reich Germany.
After Rockwell was assassinated in 1967, the group was renamed the National Social White People’s Party (NSWPP). Today, the NSWPP is but a memory and the National Socialist Movement, which deifies Rockwell, is part of the cyber community. One interesting piece of the National Socialist Movement website is the application you can download and fill out so you can become a member.

The Maine chapter of the National Socialist Movement could be found at one time on the web. Now, the website is down or has been renamed. Whether a group actually exists in Maine, separate from the website, is not known.

(Here’s an interesting piece of trivia. Rockwell went to a co-ed private school in Lewiston, Maine called Hebron Academy, which is still in existence today.)

The Creativity Movement (formerly the Church of the Creator) espouses a “white religion” called Creativity. It originally started out as the Church of the Creator in 1973, formed by Ben Klassen. In 1996 it became the World Church of the Creator. Due to copy right infringement litigation, their name changed again to Creativity Movement. The Creativity Movement leader at the time, Matt Hale, was found guilty of ordering the murder of a federal judge. Their official website is now down, but several websites have sprung up to spread the message of Creativity.

A Creativity group in Maine is said to be located on Matinicus Island. Matinicus is located 22 miles of the coast of Maine and is the farthest island from the Maine coast. That’s right. The only know Creativity group in Maine is located on an island. Good. I hope they stay there.

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